VSU Board of Visitor’s calls emergency meeting after recent incidents

Posted at 12:40 AM, Nov 26, 2013
and last updated 2013-11-26 00:40:24-05

ETTRICK, Va. (WTVR)--The Virginia State University Board of Visitors held an emergency meeting Monday, behind closed doors. Rector Harry Black did take media questions at the end.

The meeting was called after several incidents have thrust student safety into the spotlight. The board said that they want to make sure the school is doing everything it can to keep students safe--after a Homecoming stabbing, a football fight, and most recently the shooting death of a VSU student at an apartment near campus.

"To better understand how well we're doing it if there are any gaps anywhere," Black said.

"It's a little embarrassing that somebody had to die," Cory Lane, a VSU student, said.

The university will hire an outside consultant to evaluate school safety and security.

"That’s a good start to get an outside presence of what's going on," said Lane.

It's the second consultant hired this month by VSU. The first was a Washington attorney; hired to investigate what exactly happened when a VSU football player assaulted the rival quarterback for Winston-Salem State University.

The fight resulted in VSU suspension for 2013 postseason. Before the attack that landed one VSU player in jail, the team was set to face WSSU in a chamnptionship game.

"They’re two different things," Black said.

The school is also looking into another concern raised by several students on Monday.  Students told CBS 6 that they were concerned over the amount of time it took an ambulance to respond to Thursday’s shooting scene.

"Police were there fast but the ambulance took a long time," said Kevin Selden, a VSU student who lives in the off-campus apartment complex where the shooting took place.

Lt. Jason Elmore with Chesterfield Fire and EMS told CBS 6 that they were on scene in five minutes that night. He said they were called to the scene at 11:28 p.m. and the ambulance arrived at 11:33 p.m.

He said the ambulance crew had to wait for police to clear the scene to make sure it was safe before they could get to the victim.  That happened at 11:44 p.m., Elmore said.

As VSU continues to investigate, students like Selden hope his home away from home never again looks like it did last Thursday.

"I got there before they even sectioned off the crime scene, I seen the crime scene," said Selden.